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Nurse Brings Professional Medical Care to Medford, Ore.

Until the late 1800’s, Medford, Ore., did not have a hospital, forcing the sick and injured to receive treatment at home or in a doctor’s office.  Only very ill patients received nursing care until 1895 when Olivia Dyre Osbourne moved to town.  Osbourne was an 1892 graduate of the Illinois Nurses Training School and had worked at hospitals in Chicago.

 In Medford Osbourne saw a need to improve the requirements necessary to become a graduate nurse in Oregon and to treat nurses as individuals.  In 1911, she became the first registered nurse in Oregon. Through her efforts, nurse registration in Medford was established and she became the first president of the Board of Nurse Examiners, serving until 1918. 

The 1927 silver anniversary of the state nurses convention recognized her for her contributions to nursing care. Osbourne worked her entire life for nurses and the development of their profession.

Olivia Osbourne died in 1942 and was buried without a headstone in the Eastwood Cemetery in Medford.  In 2008 Shelley Truwe, also a registered nurse, led a nurses’ campaign to buy a headstone that now marks Osbourne’s grave.
 

Source:. "Some Oregon History, Revised - Medford's IOOF Cemetery. Ed. Ben Truwe. Web. 22 July 2015. .

Luana (Loffer) Corbin graduated from Southern Oregon College, majoring in Elementary Education.  The summer after graduation she was hired to teach at Ruch Elementary, where she taught for 32 years. After retiring, Corbin worked for Lifetouch School Photography and then returned to Ruch as an aide helping with reading instruction and at the library.  More recently, she has volunteered at South Medford High.